Yuri Hitches a Ride on Dream Chaser

yuri secures a ride for its ScienceTaxi incubator aboard Dream Chaser.
Credit: Sierra Space

yuri’s ScienceTaxi will fly to the ISS on Sierra Space’s Dream Chaser in 2024, the companies recently announced. 

Confused? OK, OK…we’ll break it down piece by piece. 

  1. Founded in 2019, yuri (the lower-case Y being the company’s preference) is developing the ScienceTaxi incubator for cost-effective access to microgravity research opportunities. 
  2. The German space biotech startup has raised $4.3M to date, with the company extending its seed round in July.
  3. In August, yuri signed a letter of intent with The Exploration Company for a demo flight on Nyx, a reusable robotic spacecraft in development, in 2024.

Now, yuri’s also hitching a ride to space aboard Dream Chaser, a reusable spaceplane that is an integral pillar of Sierra’s end-to-end “platform” in LEO.

ScienceTaxi specs:

  • Able to host up to 38 individual experiment units (dubbed “ScienceShells”)
  • Offers temperature control, real-time data collection, and full automation (the vessel is uncrewed)
  • Equipped with a centrifuge, allowing experiments to be conducted with Earth, Moon, or Mars gravity as a reference

What they’re saying

“Controlled microgravity research is now possible on any orbital or suborbital platform thanks to our agreement with yuri and its ScienceTaxi and ScienceShells,” said Sierra Space SVP and GM of space destinations Neeraj Gupta.

“Scientists around the world can secure their research slots on ScienceTaxi with a variety of different experiments…such as cell, plants, and crystal experiments,” explained yuri co-CEO Mark Kugel.

What’s next? The first Sierra Space Dream Chaser spaceplane is currently scheduled to be launched aboard the second ULA Vulcan flight to the ISS in early 2023.